Games to help your toddler listen

How your child listens and understands the world changes as they growYou can help them develop these skills by playing games.  

Try setting up some games at home to learn and have fun at the same time. Remember to give your toddler short, simple instructions so they know what to do.  

You can also play your own listening games with your child while doing everyday tasks. Start noticing the noises around you and talk about them with your child. 

listening toddler looking at camera

Musical statues 

Play some music on your phone, computer, tablet or radio for your child to move or dance to. When the music stops, they freeze! 

To keep it interesting, you can:  

  • Vary the length of time you play the music. 
  • Vary the volume (this might catch your child out). 
  • Involve other children. You can do this over a video call if you’re playing remotely.  

March and sleep  

Grab a noisy object and a quiet object. You can try using a cooking pan as a drum and filling a jar with beads or rice to make a shaker.  

When you play the noisy toy, get your child to march around the room. When they hear the quiet one, get them to lie one the floor and pretend to sleep.  

Vary the length of time you make the noises. Then swap with your child so they can make the noises and test your skills. 

What did you hear?  

Gather a few noisy objects, hide them under the blanket, and make a sound with one of them. Then whip the blanket away and let your child guess which object made the sound. 

Increase the number of toys until you’re using five or six under the blanket at a time. Try making sounds from several toys or objects at once. 

Go back

How can I help my child’s language skills?


Communication milestones for young children: listening


How can play help my child learn new words?


Communication milestones for young children: speech and language


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